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When you have
multiple sclerosis (MS), you may have certain physical
cognitive challenges. Rehabilitation—including
physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and cognitive
retraining—may help reduce these disabilities.
Your personal physical therapy
program to restore and maintain mobility will depend on the severity and
duration of your MS symptoms. You may need physical therapy only occasionally
as symptoms flare. Or you may need it daily to reduce constant symptoms.
Your ability to perform the exercises will help your therapist know
which exercises to prescribe. Most therapy can be done at home either alone or
with an assistant after an initial training program at the therapist's office.
Occasional office visits will be needed to help the therapist monitor your
progress. All exercise programs should allow you time to "cool off" in between
exercises, since heat can make MS symptoms worse. The most common types of
physical therapy include:
Occupational therapy usually
first includes an assessment to find out your needs and to see whether assistive
devices are needed. The occupational therapist will provide you with:
MS can cause problems in speech,
speech patterns, and with swallowing when lesions form in the brain and
interfere with message flow in the nerves. Speech therapy may help you:
Cognitive retraining is a
fairly new area of MS rehab. Its goal is to help you improve cognitive
function if you have any cognitive impairment, such as difficulty remembering,
caused by MS. Cognitive retraining may help you:
February 15, 2012
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine & Barrie J. Hurwitz, MD - Neurology
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